Skip to main content
  • Resolute Mining’s CEO Terry Holohan has been leading a 3-year turnaround of the gold mining company, focusing first on improving production and then costs.
  • Key challenges included fixing technical issues with the underground mine and sulphide processing plant in Mali. Automation efforts had to be scrapped.
  • Resolute has organically grown resources from 7Moz to 10Moz over the last 3 years through exploration drilling. Expanding production from 200koz to 230koz+.
  • With a stronger balance sheet, no debt, and net cash, Resolute is looking to continue margin expansion and potentially pursue M&A to diversify and grow.
  • Despite some instability in parts of Mali, Resolute’s operations in the southwest corner bordering Cote d’Ivoire have not been impacted. Sees West Africa as underexplored.

About Resolute Mining

Resolute Mining is an established gold miner operating two mines and three exploration projects in West Africa. Led by CEO Terry Holohan since 2021, the company is in the midst of a three-year turnaround effort to optimise operations, expand margins, and position for growth. Resolute expects to produce approximately 350,000 ounces of gold in 2024 at all-in-sustaining costs between $1,300 to $1,400 per ounce.

Interview with CEO & Managing Director, Terry Holohan

Tackling Technical Challenges

When Holohan took the reins, Resolute’s key Syama operation in Mali faced significant headwinds. The transition from open pit to underground mining using sub-level caving had proven problematic, with the mine struggling to achieve targeted grades and tonnages. Additionally, automation efforts in the underground mine had faltered due to incompatible mine design.

On the processing side, the sulphide plant was underperforming with only 80% availability. Wide fluctuations in sulphur content from the mine led to frequent temperature swings in the roaster, causing expansion and contraction that damaged equipment.

Holohan brought in a team of technical experts to systematically address these issues. At the mine, they re-established fundamental operating practices and worked to re-optimize the mine plan. In the plant, a full rebuild was undertaken to get the roaster back to a steady state.

“We had to essentially rebuild the plant over a quarter,” explained Holohan. “It was back to basics and joined-up thinking required.”

Organic Growth Through the Drill Bit

With the operation stabilised, Holohan turned to organic growth to build value. Resolute has grown reserves from 7 million ounces to 10 million ounces over the past three years through extensive drilling at and around Syama. Exploration expenditures total nearly $20 million annually.

“We’ve ticked the box on sulfide processing and mining,” said Holohan. “What we also did in terms of the balance sheet, we had to do an equity raise, which is not good for the existing shareholders. We understood all that, but we were in a lot of pain at the time. We did that raise. We brought in a lot of fund managers in from North America. And they really bought into the idea that we’ve got a growing asset here.”

This drilling success has underpinned an expansion project at Syama that will see production increase from 200,000 ounces per year to over 230,000 ounces, driving unit costs lower. Holohan sees potential to continue this growth, with only 20% of the 85km strike length at Syama having seen extensive exploration so far.

“Over the next five years, everybody internally and with the fund managers and the shareholders, we all know that there’s a tier one mine in the making over the next five years,” stated Holohan.

Tier one mines are generally considered to be those producing over 500,000 ounces per year.

The Investment Thesis for Resolute Mining

With the heavy lifting of the turnaround complete, Resolute presents a compelling case for gold investors:

  • Operational consistency: Syama has now put together 11 straight quarters of improving production and costs, de-risking the asset.
  • Robust balance sheet: Resolute has eliminated debt, built a net cash position, and is funding the Syama expansion through operating cash flow.
  • Organic growth: Resolute has grown reserves from 3Moz to 10Moz in three years through the drill bit. Production is slated to grow 15%+ in the near-term.
  • Margin expansion: As volumes increase, costs are expected to fall towards the middle of the industry cost curve. Resolute is focused on “finding the best margin ounces” through ongoing exploration work.
  • M&A optionality: With a stronger operating platform and share price, Resolute has the currency to potentially pursue accretive M&A to build scale and diversification.
  • Jurisdictional safety: Resolute’s corner of Mali has remained stable and the company maintains strong community relations. It is also exploring in Guinea and Senegal.

Looking ahead, Holohan is focused on optimising the Syama expansion and continuing to methodically advance Resolute’s vast land package to build a mineable inventory. With a proven operating team, organic growth pipeline, and robust financial footing, Resolute is well-positioned to re-rate as it delivers into its turnaround strategy.

While risks around the gold price, ongoing cost inflation, and regional instability cannot be dismissed, Resolute’s turnaround has significantly strengthened its underlying fundamentals and opened a pathway to a larger production base at improved margins over time. Resolute presents a leveraged operating turnaround story for investors constructive on the gold price with significant exploration upside.

Source: Resolute Mining – Mali Gold Turnaround Story, on Track to Become Tier-1 Mine – Article | Crux Investor